Pablo Matera has been, without a doubt, one of the great figures of the great start of The Pumas at Three nations. And not only for his beastly tackles, nor for his ball recoveries, nor for his characteristic delivery, nor for his mature statements. Also because of what he transmits with his actions, beyond the game.
Although the leadership of the captain that the Argentine national team has (it has been since October 2018 when Mario Ledesma announced it) can be evidenced in each contact he makes with the ball and with rivals, it can also be reduced in the two admirable gestures he had In the first two presentations of his team in the current edition of the tournament that brings together the powers of the Southern Hemisphere, and in which, incidentally, those of Ledesma are in a good situation for what is to come.
The first of them was in the historic victory against the All Blacks by 25-15 … It was three minutes of the first game of the national team since the close of the World Cup in Japan 2019 with a victory against the United States. Pulsations to a thousand and a lot of adrenaline in the Sydney Bankwest Stadium. And the particular dialogue that traveled the world arrived, between the man emerged in Alumni and the Australian referee Angus gardner.
The third row and a talk of respect and leadership in the middle of the game against the All Blacks.
In this conversation, the third line recognized that he defended one of his teammates at the referee’s insistence that he not do so and fired a phrase that will remain in the memory of the oval sport: “I play for my country and that is not respect”, while the shield of the Argentine Rugby Union was touched with the hand.
The duel came before the Wallabies, and after the valuable draw at 15, the captain once again brought out all his greatness: when he left the playing field and went to the changing rooms, he saw a child in the crowd, he approached, greeted him and the baby broke in tears for the emotion of being in front of his idol.
The captain of Los Pumas gave his jacket to a boy in the gallery who could not believe the award he won.
There, with the help of Facundo Isa, the third line of Stade Francais he took off his shirt and handed it to the little fan who, amid tears and applause from the audience, took home a huge gift. A child with a special story, since in addition to sharing his passion for Los Pumas, he does it for Alumni, who through his social networks, later told the story of Beni Benvenuto.